Card payments more than double in 10 years
Written by Anthony Strzalek
The number of purchases using debit and credit cards has more than doubled in the past 10 years, as contactless payments and online retail have driven a change in the way consumers pay, a new report from The UK Cards Association has shown.
Debit and credit cards were used to make 16.4 billion purchases in 2016, up 146 per cent from 6.7 billion in 2006. It means that 518 card payments were made every second last year by cardholders both in the UK and travelling overseas.
Over the past decade the growth in the number of card transactions has outstripped the rise in the amount spent, showing consumers’ increasing preference for using cards instead of cash for lower value payments. Last year the average value of a card transaction fell to £43.47, its lowest level in 15 years.
The new report, UK Card Payments 2017, highlights the impact of the growth in online spending and contactless payments. By the end of 2016, four in 10 (39 per cent) of card transactions were either online or made using a contactless card, compared to a quarter (24 per cent) the previous year.
Graham Peacop, chief executive of The UK Cards Association, said: “Card payments play a central role in our economy, with spending equivalent to a third of the UK’s GDP. As consumers continue to make the switch from cash to contactless and with the rise of the app-economy, we forecast that the number of card payments will grow substantially over the next decade too.”